Once you start drinking alcohol, you’ll be on a slippery slope toward alcoholism. Don’t let that happen. Here’s how to prevent alcoholism.
Even if you think it can never happen to you, the truth is it’s possible for anyone to become an alcoholic. Research has also found that certain groups of people are at greater risk for drinking problems.
It’s easy for that one glass of wine every Friday night to turn into something more serious if you become too dependent upon alcohol to drown your sorrows. Here’s how to prevent alcoholism from turning your life upside down.
Don’t Turn to Alcohol for Emotional Support
It’s easy to use the excuse that you’ve had a tough week at work to drink more than you should. But turning to alcohol every time you feel stressed out or sad can put you on a slippery slope towards addiction.
Call a friend or join a support group where you can talk to others about what you’re going through to help you cope with negative emotions. Try yoga, meditation, or exercise to help deal with stress or anxiety.
Limit or Don’t Keep Alcohol in the Home
Another obvious way to prevent alcoholism is to simply not buy alcohol. You may be tempted to drink more when it’s within easy reach and there is no one present to see you imbibe.
If excluding alcohol completely from your home isn’t an option, at least try to limit how much you have on hand at any given time. Keep only one bottle of wine or a few bottles of beer and limit indulging in it to one night a week.
Some people drink when they’re bored to help the idle hours fly by faster. Explore healthy hobbies and activities during your free time instead so you won’t be tempted to get drunk. Take an adult education class, volunteer, go for a walk, or try your hand at creating artwork or crafts.
Not only will you be working on self improvement, but you’ll distract yourself from your problems by concentrating on something pleasurable. When your mind is focused on a healthy outlet instead of what is bringing you down, you’ll feel less anxious or depressed—two mental health disorders that can lead to alcohol abuse.
Avoid Drinking Buddies
Friends who drink regularly or who drink more than they should can be a negative influence. Although no one wants to hurt anyone’s feelings, you may need to limit your time with people who drink or avoid them altogether so you don’t end up doing something you’ll regret.
You may also need to limit social activities and places that revolve around alcohol, such as bars and beer breweries.
Set a Limit and Stick to It
When you attend a party or visit a venue where alcohol is served, set a drink limit and stick to it. Drink water or another non-alcoholic beverage in between alcoholic drinks. Try to stay present enjoying your drink and take sips instead of gulping it down all at once.
Know How to Prevent Alcoholism
Although it may take some willpower, knowing how to prevent alcoholism means drinking in moderation and not using alcohol as a crutch to help you deal with problems. Try to make alcohol something you treat yourself to once in a while, not a regular part of your diet.